newNACCLogo2 2January 2016
Volume 11, Issue 1

National Association of Call Centers
newNACCInQueue
newNACCcallcenterimage
The fun, informative, and unique newsletter for the call center industry
In This Issue
  • Your New Year's Resolution? Join The NACC!
  • New Website & Newsletter Format
  • Artificial Intelligence In The Contact Center
  • Look At What NACC Member Jim Lavery & I Did!
  • What's Trending In Work-from-Home For Contact Centers
  • Call Center Comics!

Pearls Of Wisdom
"Sometimes I lie awake at night and ask, "Where have I gone wrong?"; Then a voice says to me, "This is going to take more than one night."
~ Charles M. Schulz


Did You Know That NACC..
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To advertise with the NACC, please contact the NACC at:
Tel:  601.447.8300
Fax: 601.266.5087
Email: Click here
Hi {FIRST_NAME|Valued NACC Member},

Welcome to this month's issue of the NACC In Queue newsletter!


Resolve To Join The NACC In 2016
Paul Stockford, Research Director, NACC and Chief Analyst, Saddletree Research, p[email protected]

2015 was a year of transition for the NACC resulting in what I believe to be a roster of NACC members and volunteer members who are career-oriented, focused and driven to make the customer service profession better through their involvement.  The dead wood, if you’ll excuse the expression, has been trimmed from the membership ranks and I’ve got every confidence in the group we now have as active members.
 
Our volunteer members receive a full membership in exchange for 30 total minutes of their time during the course of the annual membership.  No money exchanges hands, they just promise to participate in our infrequent member surveys and we promise to ask for no more than 30 minutes of their time.  The NACC is easy on the budget while volunteer members still have access to our new website to download our reports and research notes, post on our job board and place ads in our new Classified Ads section at no cost.
 
The only requirement for membership in the NACC is that you are actively employed in a functioning contact center in the position of supervisor or above.  Details of our volunteer and other memberships can be found on our newly-redesigned and relaunched website, www.nationalcallcenters.org.  Check it out and contact me directly if you have any questions regarding NACC membership in 2016.



New Website And Newsletter Format
Paul Stockford, Research Director, NACC and
Chief Analyst, Saddletree Research,
p[email protected]

Alert readers have likely already noticed the new look the NACC has for 2016.  Our newsletter along with our website have been redesigned to make it easier for members and subscribers to find what they need, with colors that are a little easier on the eyes.
 
The new website includes several new features including a job board that is available to all members to post jobs available, or to seek employment.  The classifieds are also available to members at no cost to list ads for anything to do with the contact center.  Got a bunch of old furniture you want to move out of the building?  List it on our classifieds.  Got an empty building you’d like to lease out or sell?  List it on our classifieds.  Growing and need to find more space for your contact center expansion?  Check out the listings in our classifieds section.  Get the picture?
 
I’d appreciate any comments you have regarding our new site or newsletter format and don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions regarding our job board, classifieds, or other features of our new website.
 
Our new site and newsletter format were both designed by our longtime web and digital marketing partner, C2C Consulting, LLC.  Check them out at www.c2caz.com or just give our primary consultant, Margaret Carson, a call at (480) 595-1501.  Tell them the NACC sent you.

 
"...new look for the NACC in 2016." 

Artificial Intelligence In The Contact Center
Paul Stockford, Research Director, NACC and
Chief Analyst, Saddletree Research,
p[email protected]

In November of 2015, Kodak Alaris announced the creation and launch of AI Foundry, a business dedicated to using proprietary artificial intelligence (AI) technology to solve the business challenge of processing unstructured data in the enterprise.  AI Foundry’s flagship offering, the Info Insight Suite, uses natural language processing to read and understand unstructured data such as e-mail, web chats, text messages, e-mail attachments, and social media content.  Beyond traditional rules-based text analytics solutions, Info Insight relies on linguistics to interpret unstructured data and route the communication to the best qualified person to respond given each person’s skill level, availability, time zone and other qualifications.

Artificial intelligence enables AI Foundry’s Info Insight to continually learn and, in essence, get smarter over time.  The algorithms driving Info Insight enable such capabilities as the smart routing described above, as well as, enabling decision-making and providing customer support without manual human intervention.  The net result is increased agent productivity, reduced handling times, cost control and the increased probability of achieving first contact resolution.  

As text-based customer communications continue to close in on voice customer communications in terms of volume of contacts, the demand for analytics solutions for both structured and unstructured data will accelerate.  AI Foundry’s Info Insight and its use of AI offers an intriguing alternative to rules-based text analytics in the contact center.

We have authored a deeper analysis of AI Foundry and the Info Insight solution in a research note format.  The analysis is available to members for download at www.nationalcallcenters.org.



Calibrio Webinar Features NACC Member, Jim Lavery
Paul Stockford, Research Director, NACC and
Chief Analyst, Saddletree Research,
p[email protected]

If you saw our November 2015 newsletter you’ll recall our telling you about a webinar that I was going to do with NACC member Jim Lavery of Desert Schools Credit Union.  The webinar was sponsored by Calabrio (www.calabrio.com) and recorded on November 19th.  As a reminder, here’s the description of the webinar:

Leveraging the Contact Center to Help Customers Embrace Change
How new contact center technologies can help you reduce confusion and create positive customer experiences 
Whether your company is changing prices, processes, inventory, or redesigning a store or website, change can be confusing and scary for even the most loyal customers. Every day, your contact center has hundreds, if not thousands, of conversations with your customers. Making sense of these conversations can help your organization better understand what your customers are saying about the changes your organization is making. In this webinar, learn how new contact center technologies like analytics can support customer-facing changes to your business by allowing you to pinpoint your customers’ reaction to those changes. 
Hear from Jim Lavery, vice president of contact center operations at Desert Schools Federal Credit Union, on the challenges he has experienced with changes in the call center environment in the ever evolving banking landscape. Jim will also discuss what he has done to ensure that his organization and contact center were ready for the recent transition to EMV payment cards.
Join Calabrio, Saddletree Research, and Desert Schools Federal Credit Union in this free web event to learn:
•    How to create your own customer experience project to gauge your customers’ reaction to new policies, products or processes
•    How to leverage your newly acquired insights to drive action across the enterprise to educate customers, adjust plans, and make the transition as easy as possible for your customers
•    How the right analytics solution can liberate voice-of-the-customer insights from your contact center interactions

If you missed the event, or even if you were among the 100+ listeners in attendance and would like to see and hear it again, here’s the link to the replay: http://calabrio.com/webinar-leveraging-the-contact-center-to-help-customers-embrace-change/.  Spend a little time on the web with us and support the home team!



What's Trending In Work From Home For Contact Centers
Michele Rowan, President, Customer Contact Strategies, www.customercontactstrategies.com

Customer Contact Strategies has worked with 200+ companies who have scaled work at home models in 2014-2015.  We've been collecting and sharing benchmarking data, thought leadership and best practices, with an emphasis on contact centers and support functions.  We help people make meaningful connections with stakeholders within and beyond their industry types.

Three trends in 2014-2015 that have gained material traction in remote work:

1.  More companies are hiring directly to home-based positions (vs. moving experienced in-house people home exclusively).  Working from home for contact centers has evolved into a mature business model, with tangible, appealing returns and very low failure risk.

The core driver for hiring direct to home is simply the cost of real estate.  As organizations find that they are running out of space, and need to consider expansion strategies, work at home is included as a channel strategy consideration.

The heavy lifting in developing a sound strategy that aligns with company culture and business objectives is choosing the right technologies to easily and securely connect people, re-shaping business process to reflect a work-anywhere perspective, and sinking some real time and thought into preparing staff at all levels of the organization.

2.  More companies are moving away from physical classrooms and into virtual ones for both on site and remote training.  In order to hire people direct to home, and potentially do that without geographical restrictions, virtual training is a must.  And it's one of the most labor-intensive components of effective remote working.

The first requirement is a content review, and often times a complete rewrite or major refresh.  In many cases, companies have added on to new hire training, and made some modifications where necessary.  But when transitioning to a completely different way of design and delivery, an entire content review or redesign is warranted, to ensure that the content reflects objectives, timing, outputs, and resources.
Second, design software may need to be procured for both live and self-directed training.  A live meeting platform including video becomes the platform for education and exchange.  And as a third point, virtual classrooms require two resources for facilitation - always.  One person delivers training, and one "produces", ensuring that employees are engaged, contributing, and understanding against the company's intentions.

3.  More companies are investing in "one click" technology to easily connect people.  If your organization has taken the decision to include remote working as a strategy, you are wise to make it supremely easy for employees to see their colleagues across the enterprise and to share knowledge/socialize with them with just one or two clicks.   If it's anything less than easy, the risk rises for declining outputs.  Next, don't underestimate the value of face-to-face interactions.  Video is high impact and should be included in most - if not all - meeting formats.  On line recognition/reward or gamification helps companies motivate and applaud high value behavior.  It also reduces time and effort required call out the best, and run meaningful contests and promotions.

The Annual 2016 Remote Working Summit is February 17-18 at the Dallas Westin Galleria. There are 20+ speakers on remote work and 200+ attendees sharing best practices and benchmarking data.

Learn more here: https://www.customercontactstrategies.com/2016-remote-working-summit



Call Center Comics 
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If you like this comic and would like to see more, write Ozzie at [email protected] and visit his website at http://callcentercomics.com or just click on the comic to tak you to his page. The NACC appreciates Ozzie letting us use some of his comics in our newsletter.   
 
To view past issues of In Queue, please click here

If you would like to contribute to In Queue, please reply to this email with "Contribute" in the subject line.

2016 National Association of Call Centers
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Reports From The NACC

The NACC has been burning the midnight oil and typing until our fingers are sore to bring out reports to our members. Each is listed below. If you are interested to see what we are writing about, click on the links below and download the executive summary of each. If you like what you see, join the NACC so that you can view these reports and others that will be coming out soon on our website.  These reports will ensure that you know the latest trends in the industry.

Geo-Fencing: Expanding The Contact Center Boundaries?:  November 2014
Neural Phonetic Speech Analytics: The Brains behind Nexidia Interactions Analytics 11.0:  July 2014
Nexidia Pushes Speech Analytics Envelope with Nexidia Interaction Analytics 11.0:  July 2014
The Time is Now:  Workforce Optimization Becomes Reality for the Small-to-Medium-Sized Contact Center: July 2013
Finding the Silver Lining in the Contact Center Cloud: May 2013
The At-Home Agent Movement - A Benchmark Quantitative Analysis: January 2013
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 2nd Quarter 2012 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 1st Quarter 2012 Data
Contact Center Mobility Study:  May 2012
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 4th Quarter 2011 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 3rd Quarter 2011 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 2nd Quarter 2011 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 1st Quarter 2011 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 4th Quarter 2010 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 3rd Quarter 2010 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 2nd Quarter 2010 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 1st Quarter 2010 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 4th Quarter 2009 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 3rd Quarter 2009 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 2nd Quarter 2009 Data
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 1st Quarter 2009 Data
North American Contact Center Industry 2008-2009: The Year in Review and a Look Ahead
State of the Call Center Industry Report: 4th Quarter 2008 Data
60 Ideas in 60 Minutes: 2008 Session
60 Ideas in 60 Minutes: 2007 Session

 
 
Our Contact Information: Paul Stockford, NACC, 100 South 22nd Ave, Hattiesburg, MS  39401
Tel:  480.922.5949, [email protected], www.nationalcallcenters.org